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Hong Kong overseas arrivals: covid testing / restrictions

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  • iamfugly

    Right, if anyone has recently travelled to Hong Kong (from UK) I would be very interested in hearing your take on what is the procedure for Amber code and testing and restrictions (travel in the city and entering public buildings etc).
    I am due to travel within the next month or so. I (think) am an educated man but I for the life of me cannot work out what their requirements are for testings etc.
    I have attempted to read their coronavirus website but it contains contradictory statements that testing ends on Day 3, yet it then continues to state testing is required on Days 4 and 6. I have lost the will regarding trying to follow their logic (i’m sure something is lost in translation!).
    Anyway, would very much appreciate any input if you have had to suffer this ridiculous procedure recently.
    Thanks

    username

    They dropped the day 4 and 6 PCR requirement yesterday so you are best off waiting until their government website is updated before trying to figure it out again

    iamfugly

    Just worked it out. The contradictory advice was due to the requirements changing on 17th Nov. Testing only required on Day 0 and Day 2 now. Days 4 and 6 have been scrapped.
    Would still be interested in hearing about peoples experience of movement restrictions in public buildings/offices etc.

    Thanks

    polly

    Hi
    Read business traveller forum. Plenty of HKGers returning and visiting there. Updating daily. With current practice, testing etc identified.
    We are transiting there Sunday, and hope our flights connect. Otherwise we will be got for an arrival PCR. Problem is visitors can’t isolate at home following a positive PCR. You will have to go to a care facility of some sort, hopefully not at penny’s Bay, in a shipping container!have been following developments very closely.
    Business folk are still avoiding, unless based there. They just cant risk a positive result. Some interesting reading on there. The 21st they open up a little more too. So hopefully you will be ok.
    Some recommend you even do your own PCR before going here, as their CT reporting levels are high now dropped to 35, they were 40, which catches a lot more positives, than say U.K. or EU. Similar to what Singapore were doing. The SATs are not catching the positives. They found that most of the positives have been caught on day 1 and day 3 PCR tests. Thus the rationale for dropping the last 2. So the travel nightmare continues.

    kevinchoi

    I flew to HK in late-September and arrived the day before they changed from the “3+4” to the “0+3” policy, so I only had to quarantine in a hotel for one day, but I guess the rest still applies:

    PCR tests: Day 0 at the airport once you land, Day 2 at any community testing centre – they advise you to pre-book a slot, but I just turned up and there wasn’t a queue. You just need to show your HKID/passport and a local phone number which you can receive text messages with (so they can send you the result). Day 4 and 6 PCR tests are now scrapped, as mentioned above.

    Antigen tests: When I was there, we had to do daily antigen tests at home for Day 1-7 inclusive, and self-report them online (they gave me a link to the webpage upon arrival at the airport), including uploading a picture of the test itself. Not sure if this policy has now changed.

    QR Code: They gave me a amber QR code upon arrival, which I could then save to the LeaveHomeSafe app. This is then turned automatically to blue on Day 3 (arrival counts as Day 0). They say that it should change around 10am, but mine only changed just before noon.

    Access to venues: I basically had no problem going anywhere except for dining-in at restaurants (although I’m not sure if this has now been relaxed). Takeaways are fine. It’s basically ok to go anywhere else, including going on public transport.

    John

    You can isolate at your hotel, as long as the hotel can accommodate you. If you have a home in Hong Kong you can also isolate there, they may want your family members to move out temporarily though. Generally only if there are unvaccinated elderly people who might be sharing a space with you, will someone be asked to go to Penny’s Bay.

    [quote quote=424001]PCR tests: Day 0 at the airport once you land, Day 2 at any community testing centre – they advise you to pre-book a slot, but I just turned up and there wasn’t a queue. You just need to show your HKID/passport and a local phone number which you can receive text messages with (so they can send you the result).

    You must now register your details on the LHS app, which yields a QR code. If you don’t do this you have to pre-book a slot. If you just turn up… well they will tell you to register on the LHS app. You don’t need a local phone number.

    Antigen tests: When I was there, we had to do daily antigen tests at home for Day 1-7 inclusive, and self-report them online (they gave me a link to the webpage upon arrival at the airport), including uploading a picture of the test itself. Not sure if this policy has now changed.

    At least from October it hasn’t been mandatory to report the results of antigen tests (except for a small selection of people, but if that applies to you you would have received special instructions). If you don’t report them online then you should still keep the photos of the tests for 3-4 months, or until your next trip to HK in case of a random inspection. 3-4 months is how long they are taking to follow up on people who didn’t take the PCR tests.

    QR Code: They gave me a amber QR code upon arrival, which I could then save to the LeaveHomeSafe app. This is then turned automatically to blue on Day 3 (arrival counts as Day 0). They say that it should change around 10am, but mine only changed just before noon.

    Mine and everyone else’s I know changed on the dot at 9am, even if we hadn’t yet been informed of the day 2 PCR result.

    No problems with going anywhere except restaurants, if you really really want to break the law you can eat in at McDonalds as the (vast majority of branches) don’t check and the police aren’t going to close down McDonald’s.

    The main problem for someone who has been in the UK is masks everywhere including outdoors except when strenuously exercising.

    iamfugly

    Hi John,
    Thanks for the information very useful. Out of interest, are you able to suggest any other eating establishments who may not need to scan your QR code. I am content with a McD’s if it allows me the luxury to sit in within the first 3 days but would much prefer to sample some local food if available.
    Thanks

    Ps. Thanks also to everyone else who has contributed information/advice. Very much appreciated!

    John

    are you able to suggest any other eating establishments who may not need to scan your QR code. I am content with a McD’s if it allows me the luxury to sit in within the first 3 days but would much prefer to sample some local food if available.

    The fast food chains like CdC, Fairwood, Maxims may not check for the same reasons. Well it is still your responsibility to scan the code when you sit down to eat, they just don’t pay a staff member to stand by the code all day long

    iamfugly

    are you able to suggest any other eating establishments who may not need to scan your QR code. I am content with a McD’s if it allows me the luxury to sit in within the first 3 days but would much prefer to sample some local food if available.

    The fast food chains like CdC, Fairwood, Maxims may not check for the same reasons. Well it is still your responsibility to scan the code when you sit down to eat, they just don’t pay a staff member to stand by the code all day long

    Hi John, I see. Many thanks for clarifying.

    sm

    Evening. Not sure anyone can help but planning a short trip to Hong Kong to sort out replacing HKID card with new smart card version before deadline.
    Would it be permitted to attend the government buildings to do this shortly after arrival to HK from Uk ( during the first three days after arrival )? 🤷🏻‍♀️
    It seems as though it’s just restaurants etc.. that is specified that you can’t sit down and eat whilst your QR code is still amber.
    Also any experience of any traveller unfortunate to have a positive PCR test in HK? Thanks in advance.

    RoundTheWorld

    Hi sm, Your LeaveHomeSafe app must have a blue code in order to enter government buildings, including the HKID new card replacement centres. So this will depend on what the rules are at that time when your arrival Amber code becomes Blue.

    sm

    Hi sm, Your LeaveHomeSafe app must have a blue code in order to enter government buildings, including the HKID new card replacement centres. So this will depend on what the rules are at that time when your arrival Amber code becomes Blue.

    Thanks so much for that 👍

    RJami1

    Simply figured it out. The conflicting guidance resulted from the requirements alteration on November 17. Testing is only necessary on Days 0 and 2. Days 4 and 6 are no longer scheduled.
    I’m still curious to see how people feel about being unable to roam around in public spaces like offices and buildings.

    RJami1

    Hi sm, In order to enter government buildings, including the HKID new card replacement centres, your LeaveHomeSafe app needs to have a blue code. As a result, this will rely on the current set of regulations at the moment your arrival’s Amber code turns Blue.

    John

    Hi sm, Your LeaveHomeSafe app must have a blue code in order to enter government buildings, including the HKID new card replacement centres. So this will depend on what the rules are at that time when your arrival Amber code becomes Blue.

    That was not true, it was only Wan Chai that required a blue code, all other HKID replacement centres accepted amber codes. Anyway all moot now

    RoundTheWorld

    Hi sm, Your LeaveHomeSafe app must have a blue code in order to enter government buildings, including the HKID new card replacement centres. So this will depend on what the rules are at that time when your arrival Amber code becomes Blue.

    That was not true, it was only Wan Chai that required a blue code, all other HKID replacement centres accepted amber codes. Anyway all moot now

    It was true. I changed my HKID card in Mong Kok centre in November and there were staff physically checking to see your Blue code.

    John

    Interesting. Did you try to go when your code was amber?

    I did mine on the day I arrived in HK in October. From September to November, around 10 of my family members also went, and they all did it as soon as they arrived or on the next morning.

    Someone told us Wan Chai was not allowing amber codes in so none of us went there, but between us we probably covered most of the remaining centres.

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